A sure sign that the holidays are upon us is the surge of food drives taking place around the Valley. Here are three we’ve learned about; please feel free to share news of food drives in which you are involved in our comments section below.
Ford and the Children’s Museum of Phoenix
Beginning today, one free general admission ticket to the Children’s Museum of Phoenix will be provided to each person who donates three nonperishable food items at any of the Valley’s 11 Ford dealerships. Donations can be dropped off through Sunday, Nov. 28 and the ticket is redeemable throughout December.
As part of Ford’s Operation Goodwill Phoenix campaign, Ford Motor Company is sponsoring “Ford Technology & Innovation Month” at the Children’s Museum of Phoenix during the month of December. In addition to the museum’s regular interactive exhibits, new activities and programs will be themed around technology and innovation reflecting the enterprising spirit of Henry Ford.
“Technology and innovation are important to both Ford Motor Company and the Children’s Museum of Phoenix,” Stephanie Jarnagan, field coordinator with Direct Impact, which is providing public relations support on behalf of Ford Motor Company. “Henry Ford’s innovations, including the Model T and the assembly line technique of mass production, brought automobiles to the general population and have inspired children all over the world to fall in love with cars. Likewise, the Children’s Museum of Phoenix was developed to inspire children and give them opportunities to create and innovate.”
For more information about the United Food Bank, visit unitedfoodbank.org.
THE PRIMROSE SCHOOLS
The Primrose School of East Mesa encourages students, families and neighbors to be “helping hands” throughout the year, according to Bob Seifert, who owns the school with his wife, Kathy.
The school is conducting a Food Drive that will wrap up on Friday, Nov. 19, with all of the Primrose Schools and Ben and Matt from KNIX.
“Our character development events are not just collecting items to donate,” says Seifert. “We take the opportunity to teach our students other valuable life lessons. For example, during the food drive, our students perform extra chores at home for which they are paid. Each student tracks how much money they earn over several weeks. The students then prepare a food budget to determine how many food items they could purchase for the food drive. We take the students to the supermarket to spend their budget. At the end of our event, our students have an opportunity to learn about: charity, community, work, math (adding up their earnings / allocating and spending their budgets), budgeting, food prices and shopping.”
The Primrose School of East Mesa is an educational childcare facility for children ages six weeks through private kindergarten that also offers before- and after-school care for older children. 480-354-2966 or PrimroseEastMesa.com.
ICM FOOD AND CLOTHING BANK
The Interfaith Cooperative Ministries (ICM) is the largest food box provider in Maricopa County and served 67,000 individuals in 2009. This year, the need is greater than ever.
“People in every pocket of the Valley are going through the toughest financial times of their lives,” says Executive Director Renea Gentry. “It’s quite possible that we could have one household donate food to us and, unbeknownst to them, their very own next-door neighbor is coming to us for a box of food to feed their family. Nearly 20 percent of the people coming to us for help have never been here before.”
Donations to this year’s Food and Clothing Bank will help those in need through the Thanksgiving and Christmas season. Items most needed are any non-perishable food items, such as canned vegetables and soups as well as protein-rich food like tuna fish and peanut butter. Diapers and toiletries (shampoo, lotion, soap, toothpaste) also are needed. 602-254-7450 or icmaz.org.